COLORADO SPRINGS, COLO – Adolescent eggheads: get on your mark. The starting gun for the Colorado Mathematical Olympiad will sound at 9 a.m. Friday at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs.

The Math Olympiad, directed by Alex Soifer, professor of mathematics, is a chance for middle school students and high-schoolers to whip out their calculators, compasses, and straight-edge rulers and show the world what they’re made of.

Registration takes place between 8:15 and 9 a.m. on the first floor of the Science building on the CU-Colorado Springs campus, 1420 Austin Bluffs Parkway. There, an estimated 500 students from throughout Colorado will be assigned a room and given four hours to tackle five mind-bending problems.

Soifer promises that this year’s problems, as always, will be unusual and exciting. “They will positively challenge your creativity,” he said.

The goal for the 19th Math Olympiad, as it has been in the past, is to whet the appetites of young mathematicians.

“If you like our problems and solve some of them during or after the Olympiad, have no doubt: mathematics has entered your life and will be connected with your future work one way or another,” Soifer said.

This year, CU-Colorado Springs chancellor Pamela Shockley will be offering the top three winners – to be dubbed gold, silver, and bronze medallists — a $1,000 scholarship offer.

The event is designed for high school math students who want to test their talent and ingenuity in a competitive format. The event is also open to middle-school and junior high students. Last year, a middle-school student won the competition.

The competition is free and there are no limits on the number of competitors from a school. There is no pre-registration.

Winners will be announced at an awards ceremony at 2 p.m. on Friday, April 26, at the Science Auditorium. At that time, Soifer will review the answers to the five questions; deliver a lecture on mathematics, and present the awards. A reception will follow the award presentation.

For more information about the Math Olympiad, and to view problems from previous years, visit

CU-Colorado Springs, located on Austin Bluffs Parkway in northeast Colorado Springs, is the fastest growing university in Colorado and one of the fastest growing universities in the nation. The university offers 25 bachelor’s degrees, 17 master’s and two doctoral degrees. The campus enrolls about 7,000 students annually.